Haiti – Caring Enough to Ask Why
What do we think about what has happened in Haiti? Pat Robertson has proffered a spiritual reason for this tragedy that is frighteningly hateful. A young friend has just tweeted simply, “Theodicy?” which is a defense of the goodness of God in the face of “evil.” These two are among a host of people who are struggling to understand how and why such horrible occurrences happen in the world. The tsunami which took place in 2004 and Hurricane Katrina gave rise to similar questionings. At the root of many of the questions really is, why would God let something like this happen to God’s creation?
Even the people who bequeathed to us the writings that make up the book of Genesis wrestled with why tragedies happen. I suppose we are no closer to finding a satisfactory answer now than then. Well, let me just speak for myself: I have no answers, but I care. I care deeply. I care enough to act and I care enough to ask.
Yes, I will contribute financially to the relief effort and encourage friends and those I serve to do the same. But, beyond this, I will do the much harder work of grieving the dead. I will sit still and, at least, try to wrap my mind around the scope of the loss of life. I will work hard not to hear the big number of the nameless, faceless others who died in the tragedy. Instead, I will try to mourn individual people… mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, babies of specific and particular backgrounds who have ceased to hope, to love. I will look up and out into space imagining the direction of these brothers and sisters who have taken transit to the next realm and I will re-member them. I will name them and not number them. I will re-member, I will put the broken back together in my heart. I will love these individual people.
Of course, I will ask “why?” But having the answer is not as important as caring enough to ask the question.